Poland elected a new prime minister, Donald Tusk, on October 21st. This will bring to an end an interesting period – this was the first time that the two heads of a national government have been identical twins! The outgoing prime minister of Poland is Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his identical twin, Lech Kaczynski, is the president. Thankfully, Lech has a mole on his cheek that his twin doesn’t – that certainly made life easier for people around them! The Kaczynski twins were born in Warsaw, the capital of Poland. They became mini-celebrities at the age of 12 when they acted in a film.
Poland was founded as a nation in the 10th century. It was ruled by other countries from the 1700s until World War I when it became independent. After World War II, it became a communist country under the control of the Soviet Union. It had its first democratic elections in 1990, after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Poland joined the European Union in 2004.
The first woman to have won a Nobel Prize was of Polish origin. Marie Curie was born in Warsaw, and later moved to France. In fact she named one of the chemical elements she discovered after Poland – polonium. In Poland, celebrating “name day” is more important than celebrating a birthday. Each day of the year has a few names associated with it, and you celebrate on the day that has your name!